Thursday, 23 August 2012

Angela Nilsen's Twice Baked Cheese Souffles

Having been lulled into a false sense of souffle-making-knack-security when I made Kerstin Losch's Mousse di Limao for the Olympic Food Challenge, I figured that I was expert enough to pull off these twice baked souffles.

First bake....
I first happened across the recipe in Good Food Magazine a few months back and filed it away in the 'to do list' as a tick in the 'learn to souffle' box.  It also had the added bonus of being cheesy and low in calories so it was definitely a must-make.

Because the recipe is done in two stages, it allowed me to start it off on Sunday and then finish it today for dinner, thus claiming the recipe for today (my blog, my rules!).  With a full day of Prince2, including the practitioner exam late in the afternoon, I knew I'd be pushing it.  Any other Thursday, I'd've probably given into the hubby's demands for a chippy tea, but now he's on this health kick, chippy trips are banned (by him, not me for once).  But it forced me to not give up on this madcap challenge at the last fence.

Things started well on Sunday with the really cheesy sauce.  The roux is made from olive oil with just a touch of butter.  I'm not sure if the oil makes a difference but for once, I didn't have to battle to beat lumps from the sauce.  The addition of parmesan, Philly, chives and mustard made an amazing tasting cheese sauce.  I carefully folded in the whipped eggs as instructed and set them in the oven to bake in a bain marie.

....second bake....Disaster!
They rose well.  I timed them.  They looked cooked.  I left them to cool, and then ejected them from their pots.  Not good.  All three broke coming out of the mould - it looked like they weren't actually cooked enough in the first place.  Trouble was, even though it said how long to cook them for, there was nothing saying how to check that they'd reached the desired consistency in the middle.  Undeterred, I carefully transferred them to a tupperware box, wrapped as best I could and froze them.

But of course, once they hit the oven, they just spread into a huge, cheesy mess.  And to be honest, they went from tasty to bland - perhaps after the addition of the egg whites to the cheese sauce?  To say I was disappointed to have no tea after such a bad day would've been an understatement.  However now I'm all Prince2'd up, I saw the risk on Sunday and made sure I had some bread in to make toast for my tea instead.  I believe that's a Fallback Plan to use the correct terminology.  Or what mere mortals would refer to as Plan B.  Shame my risk budget didn't extend to lobster and champagne to celebrate surviving the exam with my sanity (just about intact).

So it's a thumbs down to this recipe for me.  But don't let me put you off trying it.  Just make sure you have a risk mitigation plan in place first!  You can find it here.

1 comment:

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